Chhole bhature is a quintessential must-have breakfast in the Capital. In fact, it is an equaliser. From rich and poor to students and professionals, the lip-smacking North Indian speciality is loved by one and all. There are many places in South Delhi where chana bhatura or chhola bhatura cannot be missed.
For students, food not just has to be tasty, but also something that is easy on the pocket and this popular dish meets their requirement. In the vicinity of two prestigious educational institutions Jawaharlal Nehru University and Indian Institute of Technology-Delhi, an eatery, Shree Ram Sweet Centre, is popular with students from all over Delhi. Students from nearby colleges like Indian Institute of Mass Communication also come here to have chhole bhature.
Established in 2001, this sweet shop and eatery in the DDA market of Ber Sarai serves delicious North Indian fare, but chhole bhature remains the most sought after item. As soon as the shop opens its doors at 8am, the hungry throng the place to have the best meal of the day. It stays open till late in the night.
The bhature, at times stuffed with cheese to enhance the taste, go well with lassi. “Chhole bhature aren’t healthy, but they are yummy, filling and pocket-friendly. A plate of chhole bhature costs Rs 40 and a glass of lassi comes for Rs 25 here. So I love coming to this place,” said Anadya Sharma, a student of IIMC.
“There are several other places where one can get chhole bhature of much better quality, but not at this price,” said Rakesh Singh, a JNU student. Since there is no dining area here, students can be seen enjoying their meal on bikes, two-wheelers or roadside and that’s not an issue.
Another popular food joint in the market is Kakaji Corner, which was established in 1997 by the Khandelwal family from Rajasthan. The corner serves to hundreds of customers in a day, who come from different parts of Delhi. The bhaturas are served with a tasty chickpea curry, and carrot and green chilli pickle. The bhaturas are crispy and are available at Rs 50.
Manoj Khandelwal, owner of the outlet, said, “We get many customers as we serve delicious and affordable food. Students specially come here to have our chhola bhature. In fact, some of our customers get chhole bhature packed for their relatives as well.”
Another must-visit place for chhole bhature is Durga Sweets in Sarojini Nagar. It was opened in 1988 and since then it has been selling a variety of sweets like kaju barfi and kalakand to its countless customers.
They swear that the cheese-stuffed bhaturas here have no match. David Thompson, an Australian chef, restaurateur and cookery writer, known for his expertise in Thai cuisine, has also visited Durga Sweets for its chhole bhature.
Jitender Dawar, owner, claims that chhole bhature from his shop have travelled to London, Philippines, Singapore and Switzerland. “We use 36 different spices to prepare our chhole and customers always come back to us to have more,” he said.
During lunch hours, his shop remains packed and customers have to wait to place their order. People from as far as RK Puram, INA, Green Park, Chittaranjan Park come to this place for freshly made chhole bhature. A plate of chhole bhature for Rs 50 with a glass of raita that costs Rs 15, one can have a filling breakfast or lunch.
Eatopia at India Habitat Centre also serves good quality chhole bhature at Rs 140. The food court is open to all and has a variety of choices of the cuisines varying from Indian to Chinese to continental. The chhole bhature here are equally popular with the arty crowd and intellectuals.
“I usually avoid oil-rich food, but whenever I come to India Habitat Centre, I come here to have their chhole bhatura. It’s okay to sin once in a while,” says Madhavi Sharma, an artist.